Canada finalizes regulations for export of wild rice to China

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Canada’s wild rice producers will now have access to another export market.

The Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA) on Thursday released details of a certification program for producers, warehousers and processing facilities looking to ship to China.

In 2013-2014, Canadian wild rice exporters expressed keen interest in accessing the Chinese market and sought the CFIA’s assistance. In September 2015, the CFIA and China’s General Administration of Quality Supervision, Inspection and Quarantine (AQSIQ), officially signed the Protocol on the Inspection and Quarantine Requirements for Exporting Wild Rice from Canada to China.

In order to facilitate exports and comply with the requirements listed in the Protocol, the CFIA has developed an audit-based compliance program. To export Canadian wild rice to China, the processing, warehousing and exporting facilities must first be approved by the CFIA and recognition of this approval must be obtained from the AQSIQ.

  • Wild rice is primarily produced in Manitoba, Saskatchewan, and Ontario. While the Canadian wild rice market is relatively small, industry estimates project exports to be approximately $5 million worldwide.
  • Wild rice is a member of the grass family and the genus Zizania. The grain can be harvested from two species that are produced in Canada; Zizania aquatica and Zizania palustris.
  • The plants grow in shallow water in small lakes and slow-flowing streams; often, only the flowering head of wild rice rises above the water. – CNW
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